Live On The Web
A tale of how I was interviewed on a Canadian radio program about the state of the Internet in Japan, and how you can listen to the interview on the WWW.
In mid-August I was cruising the WWW one night, and decided to try a site that I'd read about in Wired Magazine. This was the site from which I downloaded and tried the Real Audio WWW software reviewed in this issue of the AJ.
The RealAudio home page has an extensive listing of links where one can find ".ra" sound files to play on the WWW. As I scrolled through the list, I came across a link to a computer show on a radio station in Victoria, Canada. I followed the link, and listened to the "Online" show which a guy named Frank Hilliard hosts live on Sunday afternoons in Victoria. He had three shows posted on the page, with guests talking about OS/2 and Win95, WWW page publishing, and answering call-in questions about computers and the Net. I thought the site was neat, and filled out a comments form on his web page and sent it off.
To my surprise, the very next day (Wednesday, August 15) I found this in my email box:
Thank you for your comments. You're exactly the kind of listener I hoped would be attracted by the online show. Now, here's my request.
I'd like to be able to chat on-air with some of my listeners on the Net around the world. If it's possible for you to call me collect while the show is on, I would really enjoy a few minutes talking about the impact of the Internet on Japan and the impact of ten years in Tokyo on a Canadian.
Please let me know if you can do this, as I think this is a step towards the future of 100% on-line broadcasting.
Best regards, Frank
Wow! Needless to say, I whipped off an email, saying I'd be honored to appear on his show, and Frank came right back:
PC>I suggest we arrange a date for which show you'd like me to call, and perhaps you could also email me some ideas about what you'd like to talk about.
Well, that's easy, I'd like to have a brief chat with you this Sunday! The general theme of the show this week is government involvement in the net. I've got two developers who have been working on the B.C. Govt. home page and Geof Wheelwright will be talking about the same thing. I know The Government of Japan has recently opened a large new Web site and I presume you, living in Japan, have a feel for how Japan generally views the Web.
PC> If you'd like to know more about me, let me know....
Yes, indeed. Just a few lines to give me an idea of who you are and what you're doing professionally. Also how you happened across the program on the Net.
Best Regards, Frank Hilliard
I was in, and had only a couple of days to prepare for the show. I sent Frank my resume as an attachment to an email in which I suggested a few possible topics. Then I spent three or four hours cruising the WWW checking Japan-related sites, and collecting some stats about Internet use in Japan.
Monday morning, August 21, I called CFAX 1070 in Victoria, collect. I heard the tail end of the first section of Frank's show, then while the news update was playing, Frank came onto the phone and told me we'd be live in a minute. The next few minutes passed in a blur as I struggled to concentrate and make coherent, clear responses to Frank's questions. We talked about the growing Japanese government presence on the WWW, the effect of NTT's high rates on dial-up Net users, and some statistics comparing Internet use in Japan and Canada. Suddenly, my time was up, and I was staring at a silent telephone handset.
I was dying to listen to the show, and the next day Frank had it compressed and digitized and up on the Online show WWW page. Yay! My five minutes of fame. If you get the RealAudio software and have a WWW connection, you can hear the show at:
Thank you for calling the show yesterday and for your contribution to its "worldwide" content. This was the first time I've had someone on where all the arrangements were by email and it worked very well. Your comments were interesting and the quality of the line was excellent.
Thank you, Frank! It happened so fast, and I'm still basking in the afterglow. But that's the Net for you - SPEED. From downloading the RealAudio software, to email exchanges, to live radio interview, to a minor bit of fame <G> on a small corner of the Internet, all in less than a week.
Authors note: this article is taken verbatum from the original text published in Algorithmica Japonica, so some of the references to links may "read" a bit strangely on the WWW.
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